When it comes to Rachael Ray, it seems that people either love her or hate her. I happen to be in the camp that loves her (if you’re in the other camp, please don’t hate me!). I own many of her cookbooks and have watched countless hours of 30 Minute Meals. What I love about her is how accessible she makes cooking seem. She loves good food, but she doesn’t use hard to find ingredients or hard to master techniques in her recipes.
When I started watching 30 Minute Meals, my cooking skills were still evolving, but when I would watch an episode of her show, I would often be inspired to try something new. In fact there was one day when I watched an episode with my daughters and she made chicken fried steak with potatoes, gravy, green beans AND a chocolate pie. It looked so good that we decided we would try and tackle that meal and see if we could do it in 30 minutes. Between the three of us working as fast as we could, we got the meal on the table in roughly 30 minutes, but the kitchen was a COMPLETE disaster! I think it took us longer to clean up the mess than it did to make the meal, but dinner was delicious. By trying new things like that, my cooking skills were rapidly improving.
Over time I’ve gotten so that I rely less on recipes when I cook, but I do still have my favorite Rachael Ray recipes. Today’s recipe is one of those and it’s one that my family will often request. Unlike the chicken fried steak meal, this one is absolutely doable in 30 minutes with one person and it doesn’t destroy the kitchen. It’s a pasta dish with all the flavors of chicken piccata and it is quick and easy to make, but special enough that you could entertain with it.
Chicken Piccata Pasta Toss
- 12 oz penne pasta, cooked according to package instructions
- 1 1/4 lb boneless chicken breast, cut into 1 inch pieces
- 2 tbsp olive oil, divided
- 2 tbsp butter, divided
- 2 shallots, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp flour
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1 cup chicken stock
- juice of one lemon
- 2 tbsp capers
- 1/4 cup parsley, chopped
- salt and pepper
Chop the shallots, garlic and parsley. Juice the lemon. I find it works well to put the ingredients in small bowls next to the stove, since this recipe comes together pretty quickly.
Cut chicken up and season with salt and pepper.
Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken and saute until no longer pink. Remove from skillet and set aside.
Add remaining tbsp of olive oil and 1 tbsp butter to skillet. Add shallots and saute for about 3 minutes. Add garlic and saute until fragrant.
Add flour to shallot mixture and combine and allow to cook for a minute. Whisk in wine and then chicken stock and lemon juice.
Stir in capers and parsley.
Stir final tbsp of butter in and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Return chicken to skillet and stir cooked pasta into mixture.
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